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Sixth Place Finish For Ireland U-18 Girls In Manchester

Sixth Place Finish For Ireland U-18 Girls In Manchester

The Ireland Under-18 Sevens Girls lost a tight Bowl final to Wales East (19-12) as they finished sixth overall at the 2015 Sainsbury’s UK School Games in Manchester today.

Stan McDowell’s Combined Provinces selection missed out on the Bowl title despite a battling performance in the decider. A couple of breakaway tries from quick tap penalties inspired Wales East to a seven-point victory.

Bowl runners-up Ireland can take a lot from the tournament as they build towards next weekend’s Rugby Europe Grand Prix Series event in Liege, Belgium. They have been drawn in Pool B with Wales, Italy and Spain.

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The new-look Irish squad tallied up 18 tries during their six-match run in Manchester. Portlaoise speedster Eimear Corri (5), Ballina’s Mairead Hopkins (4) and Gorey’s Niamh Doran (3) topped the scoring charts, with captain Chloe Blackmore from Carrick-on-Suir notching a try and nine conversions.

Ireland went close to making an early breakthrough in the Bowl final, with only a tap tackle preventing Westmanstown’s Molly Scuffil McCabe from finishing off a promising left wing break by Corri (pictured above).

Corri and Welsh flyer Emma Hennessy had a fascinating individual battle, but India Berbillion took centre stage with a fine dummy and midfield burst that rewarded her with a converted try for Wales East.

Corri was well shepherded by Hennessy during two more attacks, although the resolute Welsh defence finally gave way just before the interval. Hopkins managed to burst clear of two tacklers to grab a tremendous solo try which went unconverted.

Crucially, Wales East seized the momentum again with an early second half try from Kourtney Lewis and a third followed from the impressive Hennessy after Doran was unfortunately isolated at a ruck while Ireland were on the front foot.

The strong-running Sabrina Kennedy from Cill Dara led the response, breaking clear of Hennessy on the left wing before Berbillion got back to haul here down. Time ran out on Ireland’s comeback bid, although Blackmore did really well to exploit some space on the right and raid in behind the posts for a try she converted herself.

In the early morning session, Ireland enjoyed a runaway 33-10 Bowl semi-final success against Scotland, with five tries scored in all. Skipper Blackmore led by example, creating a number of scores and landing four high quality conversions.

Scotland led on two occasions during the first half, profiting from quickly-taken penalties, but a Corri brace had Ireland 14-10 to the good at the break. A long range arcing run saw her beat two defenders on the outside, and then Blackmore’s delayed pass gave her the time and space to sprint clear again from her own half.

The girls in green went on to dominate the closing seven minutes, with good build-up play from Hopkins, Shannon Touhey and Blackmore allowing Yvonne O’Shea from Bantry Bay to get free on the left and score a third seven-pointer.

Doran was next over the whitewash, showing great feet to outfox the Scottish defence in their 22, and Kennedy wrapped up the scoring with an excellent step off her right and powerful run to the line.

2015 Sainsbury’s UK School Games – Sevens Day 1 Results

2015 Sainsbury’s UK School Games – Sevens Day 2 Results

2015 Sainsbury’s UK School Games – Sevens Day 3 Results

IRELAND UNDER-18 GIRLS SEVENS Squad (2015 Sainsbury’s UK School Games, Manchester, Friday, September 4-Sunday, September 6):

Eimear Corri (Portlaoise/Leinster)
Niamh Doran (Gorey/Leinster)
Molly Scuffil McCabe (Westmanstown/Leinster)
Chloe Blackmore (Carrick-on-Suir/Munster) (capt)
Robyn Gleeson (UL Bohemians/Munster)
Vicki Graham (Clogher Valley/Ulster)
Yvonne O’Shea (Bantry Bay/Munster)
Kate English (Carrick-on-Suir/Munster)
Shannon Touhey (Tullamore/Leinster)
Mairead Hopkins (Ballina/Connacht)
Brittany Hogan (Ballynahinch/Ulster)
Sabrina Kennedy (Cill Dara/Leinster)

RESULTS:

Friday, September 4 –

Pool A:

Ireland Four Provinces 15 England North 33
Scorers: Ireland: Tries: Eimear Corri, Mairead Hopkins, Brittany Hogan

Team: Molly Scuffil McCabe, Robyn Gleeson, Chloe Blackmore (capt), Kate English, Eimear Corri, Yvonne O’Shea, Mairead Hopkins.

Subs: Niamh Doran, Sabrina Kennedy, Vicki Graham, Shannon Touhey, Brittany Hogan.

Day 1 Round-Up – Ireland U-18 Girls Take Positives From School Games Opener

Saturday, September 5 –

Pool A:

Ireland Four Provinces 24 Wales West 10
Scorers: Ireland: Tries: Kate English, Eimear Corri, Mairead Hopkins, Niamh Doran; Cons: Chloe Blackmore 2

Team: Molly Scuffil McCabe, Robyn Gleeson, Chloe Blackmore (capt), Kate English, Eimear Corri, Yvonne O’Shea, Mairead Hopkins.

Subs: Niamh Doran, Sabrina Kennedy, Vicki Graham, Shannon Touhey, Brittany Hogan.

Ireland Four Provinces 12 England South East 19
Scorers: Ireland: Tries: Mairead Hopkins, Eimear Corri; Con: Chloe Blackmore

Team: Molly Scuffil McCabe, Robyn Gleeson, Chloe Blackmore (capt), Kate English, Eimear Corri, Yvonne O’Shea, Mairead Hopkins.

Subs: Niamh Doran, Sabrina Kennedy, Vicki Graham, Shannon Touhey, Brittany Hogan.

Cup Quarter-Final: Ireland Four Provinces 12 England South West 22
Scorers: Ireland: Tries: Molly Scuffil McCabe, Niamh Doran; Con: Chloe Blackmore

Team: Molly Scuffil McCabe, Robyn Gleeson, Chloe Blackmore (capt), Kate English, Eimear Corri, Brittany Hogan, Mairead Hopkins.

Subs: Niamh Doran, Sabrina Kennedy, Vicki Graham, Shannon Touhey, Yvonne O’Shea.

Day 2 Round-Up – Ireland U-18 Girls To Face Scotland In Bowl Semi-Final

Sunday, September 6 –

Bowl Semi-Final: Ireland Four Provinces 33 Scotland 10
Scorers: Ireland: Eimear Corri 2, Yvonne O’Shea, Niamh Doran, Sabrina Kennedy; Cons: Chloe Blackmore 4

Team: Molly Scuffil McCabe, Robyn Gleeson, Chloe Blackmore (capt), Kate English, Eimear Corri, Brittany Hogan, Mairead Hopkins.

Subs: Niamh Doran, Sabrina Kennedy, Vicki Graham, Shannon Touhey, Yvonne O’Shea.

Bowl Final: Ireland Four Provinces 12 Wales East 19
Scorers: Ireland: Tries: Mairead Hopkins, Chloe Blackmore; Con: Chloe Blackmore

Team: Molly Scuffil McCabe, Robyn Gleeson, Chloe Blackmore (capt), Kate English, Eimear Corri, Brittany Hogan, Mairead Hopkins.

Subs: Niamh Doran, Sabrina Kennedy, Vicki Graham, Shannon Touhey, Yvonne O’Shea.